Long Term Effects Of Abuse

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Holly Says:

I have looked extensively for info with my situation but haven't found much.
when I was 15 I started doing pills, and it resulted in 5 yrs of heavy addiction to xanax, up to the point of doing about 30 mg per day and drinking in excess.
Throughout the 5 years I also did other pharms:
Hydrocodone (only a couple times, wasn't a fan)
Amitriptilene and Nortriptilene (for about 6 months with Xanax)
Rohypnol (for about 6 months with Xanax)
Marijuana (entire time with Xanax, and still smoking to this day)

I have been clean now for 4 1/2 years (with the exception of occasional marijuana use) and thought my brain would be more recovered by now but its not.
My short term memory is still horrible (it has barely improved), I still have serious sleep problems, anxiety, apathy, and general confusion. I also sometimes have trouble telling stories, and they sometimes don't make sense because I forget about important details, even if the event happened that day or the day before.
I have been doing puzzles (crosswords, sudoku, brain games, memory games) for about a year, trying to work my mind, but there's very little progress.

I used to be so quick and witty and knew at least a little bit about pretty much everything, but now I feel like a bumbling idiot.

Will I ever even get close to my old self or will I be dumbed down forever?

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candy Says:

kinda got the same story you play you pay, but it gets better it does brc

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Verwon Says:

Have you consulted a doctor? At this point, you should probably see a neurologist and be honest with them about everything you use for all those years.

It is difficult to say it if will ever improve, or not. It is highly possible that you did some permanent brain damage, as well as damage to other organs in your body.


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Christian Says:

No you smoke pot and take antidepressive drugs that has negative side effects on your mind sounds like you could be bpd or bipolar.

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Lin Says:

Holly, It's been a long time since you wrote this, but I thought I would talk to you anyway....

You were a kid taking a lot of brain altering drugs at a time when your brain was undergoing emotional and structural changes. It was pruning away nerve cells it didn't need anymore and amping up neural super highways it was using over and over because of how it was used.

Unfortunately you changed what your brain would have shaped its self up to be with all the chemicals you put into it which also became its experiences and substitute for emotional growth and maturity.

The brain stops emotionally maturing at the age it is when drugging and/or drinking, or any other addiction begins. So you emerged as a 15 year old addict in a 20 year old's body.

And you probably weren't nearly so quick and sharp as you thought you had been if you look at it in that light, because you were only 15 at the time. How smart and knowledgeable is any 15 year old kid... really? From a mature adult perspective, that is? And if so, the what was all the heavy drug and drinking -- damaging your brain and body about? Well, put that one aside....

So, the brain is now known to be very "plastic". You may well have damaged yours and your self-help is not going to repair what's wrong as you've already established. So you've got to do a couple of things to help yourself.

First, you have to find out what the damage is. There is only one way to do that; have a medical work-up complete with a neuropsych evaluation in which you will be evaluated neurologically, emotionally, and psychologically.

This will detail your IQ, personality, maturity, coping skills, etc. It will also provide you with suggestions for treatment plans, interventions, counseling, goals, and the like.

There are good places to get this done, but since much is interpretive, you should try to seek out an experienced tester with at least a Phd. One of the best facilities is located in Dallas, TX (PNP)

One thing to think about is the wonder of hope. You are living today free and sober, a fabulous achievement!!! Hooray for you!!! There is great HOPE for you. And you can work to heal and share your story to save others from a similar path and sorrow. You can throw out HOPE and HEALTH!

Take care and be well, my friend!

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JJ Says:

You know I would like to say that you are in the same situation as a lot of People I know, or once knew! I now take medication as directed, which i have been doing for past two years now(without using any illegal drugs), although in your situation, i do know how you feel, because if do not have my medication(which is legitimately needed), I can not think, tie my shoes, remember any phone #, etc. So my suggestion to you, would be to find a Doctor, an have an "open" relationship, meaning being truthful about what taking place in your day to day living! Cause I found that being honest, and taking medication as directed, has a big part of being able to function in this world efficiently! So hope this helps!

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